Volume 48, Issue 5 (September 2003)
Insect Faunal Succession on Decaying Rabbit Carcasses in Punjab, India
Insect faunal succession on decaying rabbit carcasses was carried out at Punjabi University, Patiala (Punjab), India, from March 1997 to December 1999. Four stages of decomposition were recognized, i.e., fresh, bloated, decay, and dry. A total of 38 insect species belonging to four orders and 13 families were recorded. Diptera, Coleoptera, and Hymenoptera dominated the carrion fauna. Calliphorids were the first to arrive in all the seasons of the year. Five species of Calliphoridae, four of Sarcophagidae, ten of Muscidae, and one each from Anthomyiidae and Otitidae were observed on rabbit carcasses. Representatives of six Coleopteran families, i.e., Staphylinidae, Histeridae, Cleridae, Dermestidae, Tenebrionidae, and Silphidae, were recorded. Eight species belonging to family Formicidae (Hymenoptera) were also collected during the present studies. Only one species of Lepidoptera was observed on carrion.